Expert suggests Armenians may try to stage local provocations
    Caliber.Az interview with Lasha Bregvadze

    INTERVIEWS  19 January 2023 - 12:41

    Huseyn Safarov

    Today is the 39th day as Azerbaijani activists hold a protest against the looting of natural resources of the Karabakh economic region by the remnants of illegal gangs. In addition, the Armenian side has defiantly ignored its commitments under the Trilateral Statement of 10 November 2020, not even bothering to appear to implement them. Meanwhile, Baku has repeatedly claimed that Armenia has used the Lachin road to plot and carry out military provocations, transport, and plant mines and other explosive devices, and illegally transport citizens of third countries to Karabakh. However, international organisations, leaders of world powers, and foreign media did not react in any way to the demand of Azerbaijan stop the illegal use of the Lachin road for revanchist plans. The Armenian side is in no hurry to meet the demands of civil society activists even now.

    In a conversation with Caliber.Az correspondent, Georgian Strategic Analysis Centre (GSAC) security expert Lasha Bregvadze, commenting on the events on the Shusha-Khankendi road section, first of all, recalled that the US and Europe are currently busy with the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.

    "The war in Ukraine is much more problematic for international observers at the moment, so it is a priority. The Azerbaijani civil activists are holding a protest on the Lachin road quite adequately and within the regulations adopted by the international community. Moreover, the Azerbaijani side has every right to hold rallies on its territory and does not violate any law by doing so. Therefore, we can conclude that the international community has no reason to put pressure on Azerbaijan. In general, the Armenian regime and pro-Armenian forces abroad present the situation on the Lachin road in a negative light in order to harm the image of Azerbaijan," the Georgian political analyst said.

    At the same time, according to Bregvadze, the 44-day war in Karabakh caused serious material and psychological damage to Armenian society.

    "As a result of this war, the Armenian leadership realised that at this stage it was unrealistic for their country to allow a military clash with Azerbaijan. Moreover, not much time has passed for the Armenian side to start any large-scale military action against the Azerbaijani army. It is possible that Armenians will try to arrange some local provocations, but in the end, it will echo badly on the image and statehood of the country," our interlocutor added.

    According to the Georgian strategic situations researcher, Armenian political leaders are not confident about tomorrow.

    "This applies both to the country's political establishment and the illegal 'authorities' in Karabakh. They do not know who and with whom they will be friends tomorrow, with whom they can join forces, and whom and what position they will take. In other words, as long as the Kremlin rulers are busy with the war in Ukraine, there will be no clear political direction and/or goals in Armenia. For the same reason, it is unlikely that delimitation and demarcation on the notional Armenian-Azerbaijani border will be possible this year. Armenia, as the losing side, is not ready for breakthrough steps and solutions to improve relations. This will undoubtedly reflect badly on itself, as its development as a democratic state depends on it. A peace agreement with Azerbaijan should have a positive impact on the economies of both countries and the entire region, but unfortunately, the Armenian side is not ready for it. On the other hand, even if Yerevan were ready for a rapprochement with Baku, it could not do so without the permission of its Kremlin handlers.

    Either way, the delimitation of borders and the signing of a peace treaty are inevitable. After the Russian side loses the war in Ukraine, a new order will be established in our region, and new regional leaders will emerge, but as a consequence of short-sighted policy, the Armenian side will continue to hold a losing position in the South Caucasus," Bregvadze summed up.



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